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Lawmakers Review Ways to Improve Lives of Boys and Men of Color

Aug 9, 2012

Advocates gathered at the state Capitol yesterday to testify about how to improve the lives of boys and men from ethnic communities.

Joshua Ham from South Central Los Angeles was one of many young men who came from all over the state to tell lawmakers how to improve the lives of people like him.

“It’s better for us to step up like this than to lash out and have something like 1992 riots or something weird like that you know. But actually have it like a structured way, you know, like have people think critically about what they want.”

Ham testified about what he describes as an overuse of school expulsions and suspensions. Other advocates urged changing health care to focus more on prevention and trauma and better work opportunities for former prisoners.

The lawmakers released their own report based on a year of hearings around the state. Sandre Swanson chairs the committee.

“This committee is the select committee on men and boys of color. But the solutions will benefit all of California’s young people.”

The committee supports nineteen pending bills that address the wellbeing of men and boys of color.